Equis ISSN 2398-2977

Foot: barefoot trimming

Synonym(s): Natural hoofcare, equine podiatry

Contributor(s): Nic Barker, Sarah Braithwaite

Introduction

  • Barefoot is a term which is used to describe the practice of keeping and working horses without shoes. This is not a new idea, but has become more widespread over the past few years.
  • Contrary to popular belief, horses hooves are extremely capable of working for prolonged periods on even the toughest terrain without shoes provided their feet are in optimum health.

Print-off the Owner factsheets on Caring for your horse's feet and Caring for your horse's feet - the barefoot option to give to your client.

Hoof characteristics

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Improving hoof health

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Biomechanics and hoof rehabilitation

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Metabolic disorders, laminitis and barefoot

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Barefoot trimming

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Further Reading

Publications

Refereed papers

  • Recent references from PubMed and VetMedResource.
  • Bowker R M, Van Wulfen K K, Springer S E & Linder K E (2008) Functional anatomy of the cartilage of the distal phalanx and digital cushion in the equine foot and a hemodynamic flow hypothesis of energy dissipation. Am J Vet Res 59 (8), 961-968 PubMed.

Other sources of information

  • Barker N & Braithwaite S (2009) Feet first: Barefoot performance and hoof rehabilitation. J A Allen & Co Ltd. ISBN-10: 0851319602; ISBN-13: 978-0851319605.
  • Simmonds-Lancaster L (2004) The Sound Hoof: Horse Health from the Ground Up. Equine Acupressure Inc. ISBN-10: 0964598272; ISBN-13: 978-0964598270.
  • Bowker R (1999) New Theory may help avoid Navicular. Michigan State University. Website: http://cvm.msu.edu. Last accessed 15th December 2008.
  • Bowker R M, Van Wulfen K K & Springer S E (1997) Macroscopic and microscopic anatomy of the ungual cartilage: A hemodynamic flow hypothesis of energy dissipation. In: Proc AAEP Convention. pp 354-355. Website: www.ivis.org/proceedings/aaep/1997/Bowker.pdf. Last accessed 15th December 2008.


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